inexpensive Archive


The Dream List


When we sit and create the dream list with a client before embarking on a renovation project, almost always top of list is a dream shower. A large walk in shower, multiple shower heads, steam abilities and a bench to sit or use to shave your legs on. The perfect shower to start your day in and a refreshing space to rinse away the grime at the end of the day.

There are a lot of fabulous fixtures to choose from with respect to shower heads, body sprays, steam units and even in drain design – I love the look of lineal drains that virtually disappear from site in the floor but what I actually get most excited about is designing the walls of a shower. Today, we often forgo the enclosed look and feel of glass walls unless the client is wanting a steam shower or the space is too small and we need glass to keep the water spray contained (less than 28 x 34 inch shower). We run radiant heat under the shower floor and that keeps you feeling warm and fabulous while you are showering and personally I love the look and feel of an open concept shower. If you are planning a glassless shower then you may have only two or a maximum of three walls to cover. What to use what to use.

Lately, we have done quite a few showers using a full slab of stone on each wall. Clean, sleek and sophisticated. I love the look and the easy to maintenance attribute. On the floor, you can have the same slab of stone, perhaps marble or granite, cut into 3×3 tiles (you need to use the smaller tiles in order to create your slope to the drain). There are also stone veneer products to consider, that will give you the look and feel of a solid slab without the big price tag. We are also seeing sheets of back-painted glass being used for shower walls. I love the back painted glass and use it on TV walls and kitchen back splashes as well. Its versatile, inexpensive and I adore the reflective qualities of the glass.

Still thinking about tile? Then how about creating a tiled, mosaic work of art in your shower? Any image can be translated into mosaic tile and then installed on your wall- flowers, birds, geometric patterns, even a picture of you can become tile art. The opportunities are endless and you can dictate your colour palette as well. Still not committed to any one look or style? How about a cultured stone wall and then paint all the rock white? Love love love this look and it happens to be very cost effective. Fabulous living is all about attention to details, and the shower isn’t to be overlooked.

Creatively Yours




I’ve always had a thing for writing or drawing on walls. Embarrassing but true – my wall art days started early as I tested my artistic skills out from the edge of my crib using the contents of my diapers. My parents love to share this tale and well it may be embarrassing I come by my love of true wall art honestly.

In our guest house, Sam and I wrote the lyrics to a song on the foyer wall, in our gym we hired a local graffiti artist to graffiti a wall with “rock that body”, in my pantry I wrote out a recipe for lemon pie and cooking temperatures and measurement equivalences and in the library my next project will be to write a quote such as “seize the day by spending it here” on a wall or on the ceiling-still pondering location. If your thinking that this works just because I have a modern home your mistaken-imagine a traditional French country château with the words from a famous French poet artistically scripted onto a bedroom wall or recipes for treasured family favorites written on the wall in the kitchen or famous quotes etched into the library walls.

True and literal wall art is artistic, creative and best of all very inexpensive way to achieve a very expensive look in a room. A fabulous do it yourself idea or not sure of your artistic talents then how about hiring a local art student for a few hundred dollars to help you out? Hand painted wall art looks richer and far more ‘designer like’ than using wall stickers in my opinion, not that I’m against wall stickers I just believe that this is a better and by far more creative and original option. Besides this way we can custom create, quote, colour and size.

Afraid to make the first stroke—no problem, try renting an overhead projector and paint from a transparency or start smaller. If your addicted to design blogs then undoubtedly you’ve seem fabulous chairs whose upholstery has been painted or even a armoire or bureau that has been graffiti’d or hand painted with pictures of dogs, trees and birds or even the queen of England. You can also keep it simple and number your dining room chairs. Painting on your walls and furniture can be contagious and you need to be careful not to overdue anyone creative idea in your home but this is one idea I think we can all bring home. Ottomans, headboards, cupboard doors and even throw cushions are all great places to consider ‘contaminating with creativity”. Oh one more idea- how about making your own dinner plates or chargers using paint designed for ceramics? Have you seen the stairs that have been painted on with brightly colored numbers or hand scripted sonnets to suggest a stair runner? Fabulous!

Pick up specialty paint products such as spare cans designed for graffiti and fabric paint and art pens at your local art store-employing the ‘write’ tool for the job always results in a better job.

Yellow, the colour of sunshine and optimism is showing up on the runways everywhere. Watch for this sunny shade to head home this winter and spring 2012. Yellow looks fabulous paired next year with bright greens, turquoise, purple and black and white.